Get back to nature with Outdoor Photographer. From landscape photography articles that include the rugged beauty of the West to the bustle of the urban jungle, use our nature and wildlife photo essays to find your next adventure.
Bighorn Canyon National Recreation Area is a little-known gem located in northern Wyoming and extending through the southern border of Montana. It was established in 1966 after construction of the Yellowtail Dam, which transformed the previously almost impassible Bighorn River into a lake that runs 71 miles south through majestic Bighorn Canyon. The south entrance is located about 10 miles northeast of Lovell, Wyoming, on Highway 37, which is the only road that services the canyon on the south side. Several campgrounds are open year-round.
Enticing new opportunities for the cultural photographer are becoming more accessible in these less traveled regions of abundant diversity
With the mega-event of the Summer Olympics coming to Beijing this year, a great deal of focus will be on China’s showcase cities as engines of modernization and commerce. Overlooked may be the incredible geography and ethnic diversity, stretching from the 15,000-foot mountains of Yunnan to the karst formations, clustered villages and rice terraces of Guizhou. These two southern Chinese provinces are populated by a range of colorful ethnic groups perhaps equaled nowhere else in the world.
One Colorado photographer takes aim at the plains in a new photo conservation book
Scenes of the famed Rocky Mountains epitomize the Colorado landscape. Jagged, snowcapped peaks in winter, yellow aspen trees in fall, blooming wildflowers in spring and yearlong wildlife sightings make for the kind of iconic shots that fill photography bookshelves. But one photographer has turned his attention elsewhere in the state. Trading steep, rocky terrain for flat grasslands, Dave Showalter captures the essence of Colorado’s eastern plains in his book Prairie Thunder: The Nature of Colorado’s Great Plains. More than an attempt to show the subtle beauty of a region where few rarely spend time, Showalter joined forces with an army of scientists, conservation groups and private landowners to complete the project. In doing so, his work has become part of a major effort to protect the Colorado grasslands.
A long, long time ago, back in April 1985, a talented German rock climber by the name of Wolfgang Gllich succeeded in making the first ascent of the climb Punks in the Gym. Gllich rated the difficulty of the route the staggering grade of 32, or 5.14. The ascent occurred in the small and at the time little-known climbing area of Mount Arapiles, located in the most unlikely of locations‚ the flat, wheat-farming region of southeastern Australia. The local climbing guide reads: For awhile, Punks was the hardest route in the known universe.
The Minnesota "Arrowhead" starts at Duluth and stretches north to the Canadian border. The southern edge of the region follows the north shore of Lake Superior, much of it part of the Boundary Waters Canoe Area Wilderness (BWCAW). The remainder of the region is part of the Superior National Forest, established by Theodore Roosevelt in 1909. The Arrowhead offers spectacular views of the cliffs of the north shore, beautiful vistas across broad valleys and many rivers and waterfalls that tumble toward Superior.
Take a road trip through the Rockies and the Smokies with two pros who map the most dramatic spots in these American icons
The Rocky Mountains and the Smoky Mountains are two of the most dramatic ranges in North America, where one can capture a fusion of geologic and scenic images. The Rockies run for 3,000 miles from British Columbia, Canada, to the lower portion of New Mexico. Straddling Tennessee and North Carolina, the Smokies are a smaller chain of mountains named for the haze that engulfs them most of the year.
Follow these tips to help you plan your next photography trip, so you‚’ll be ready to get the shot
Great photographs don’t usually happen by accident. Being in the right place at the right time is an essential element of successful photography. When you’re traveling to a new location, advance research, preparation and scouting can make all the difference between grabbing a few snapshots and making great images. Depending on the location you’re visiting, how much time you have and in what type of photography you’re interested, there are a variety of techniques you can use to make the most of your destination.
Grizzly bears, old-growth rain forest and state-sized glaciers are just a few of the photo opportunities in Alaska‚’s Chugach Mountains
Looking out the window of the small, red Super Cub, Alaska’s two-person version of an air taxi, I’m awed at the jagged, snowy peaks rising out of the dense, temperate rain forest. There are no roads, buildings or signs of humans—just mile after mile of thick green forest, turquoise lakes, alpine meadows and crevasse-laced glaciers. Having guided wilderness trips for years around the globe, I’m struggling to remember a location to match the raw beauty below. This pristine landscape consists of some of the most rugged mountains anywhere. Known as the Chugach Mountains, this Alaskan wilderness is an outdoor photographer’s paradise.
Sugarcreek MetroPark is located near the town of Bellbrook, 13 miles southeast of Dayton in southwestern Ohio. This family-friendly nature preserve is part of the Five Rivers MetroParks system of the Greater Dayton area. It surrounds a long stretch of scenic Sugar Creek and consists of several miles of easy to moderately difficult hiking trails along the creek and through the wooded hillsides. Specific trails lead to park features like the Three Sisters (a group of 550-year-old giant oak trees), the Osage Orange Tunnel, Sycamore Ridge, a stand of beechwoods and a tall-grass prairie.
A new book shows how the planet's changing climate is affecting life in the Arctic
Six years after first traveling to the Arctic Circle, nature photographer Mireille de la Lez and author Fredrik Granath have created a stunning visual record showing what the earth’s changing environment means in this part of the world. In 130 large-format, color photographs, Vanishing World: The Endangered Arctic (Abrams Books, 2007) is as much a celebration of the landscape and wildlife living in this dramatic setting as it is a firsthand account of global warming.
Seeking out the bristlecone pine in the rarified air of the mountain Southwest, David Muench finds both spiritual pilgrimage and everlasting challenge
Anchored to the steep, rocky flanks of a peak in California’s White Mountains stands a bristlecone pine so utterly exposed to the extreme climate and withering winds, it seems incredible that it ever germinated, much less matured. That this tortuously wrought living entity endured the extremes of nature’s fury for more than 4,800 years is downright miraculous.
When a creative slump happens, change your visual diet
All of us have those moments in photography where we face a creative block. The subject matter that we love and have always found interesting to shoot now suddenly seems boring and uninspiring. For both the working pro as well as the weekend warrior, you can’t risk having these dry spells.
The Cascade Mountains of Washington State form a north-south backbone extending from the Canadian border in the north to the Columbia River in the south. An hour’s drive from the Seattle area brings one to the first of many access points into the Alpine Lakes Wilderness, a 360,000-acre preserve of mountain streams, alpine lakes, deep evergreen forests and snow-covered peaks. Fifty miles from the Seattle-Tacoma region on Interstate 90, you’ll find the Denny Creek area, with a well-maintained five-mile trail that follows streams and lush mountain meadows to Melakwa Lake. Another trailhead nearby leads to Granite Mountain and more alpine and subalpine lakes.
Using the capabilities of a digital camera and embracing a desire to experiment, William Neill is producing a body of unique images that go far beyond literal landscapes
I’ve been a photographer for 35 years. I started out with my first camera in 1974, a 35mm Pentax Spotmatic. I most often photographed natural patterns and other details in the landscape. In 1982, I acquired a 4x5 field camera, and for the next 20 years, I photographed mostly with 4x5 transparency film. I continued to concentrate on photographing landscape details, as well as broad views and dramatic light.
The Mendenhall Glacier is one of the many glaciers flowing off of the majestic Juneau Ice Field—a dramatic, 1,500-square-mile expanse of glaciated ice and rugged mountain peaks located in the southeastern panhandle of Alaska. A well-established visitor’s center is just 13 road miles from downtown Juneau, and it shouldn’t be missed. Built in 1962 on a prominent rock outcropping, it’s an outstanding interpretation center for glacier dynamics and history, and it provides excellent photo opportunities of the terminus of the glacier.